GUEST POST OVERVIEW: There’s a big difference between backpacking the world on a shoestring and backpacking through the wilderness. However, in either situation, it’s probably helpful to have a well-stocked first aid kid. Since I’ve never packed one myself, I asked my friend Mark to share his tips on what he keeps in his.

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First Aid Kit – photo courtesy of ShadowFox


One thing we always recommend is to keep a well stocked first aid kit while out on any sort of adventure or spontaneous travel.

While bandaids and gauze are standard place in a first aid kit, being international requires some extra thought when packing a smart first aid kit.


Photo by Five Gallon Ideas
Photo by Five Gallon Ideas

1 – Emergency Contacts

One thing you need for sure is emergency contact information. FlightHub recommends that you not only include info for your personal contacts, but also your family doctor or local hospital.

This makes it easy for you to get ahold of medical records if you require serious medical treatment.


2 – Flashlights

REI First Aid Kit A flashlight can be a lifesaver both in a moment of medical need and simply in an emergency.

Many third world countries have limited or suspect power grids so dealing with a wound or any life-threatening situation can become perilous under the cover of darkness.


3 – Pencil and Paper

If you come upon a dire medical situation you may need to properly document your findings. FlightHub equates it to a cold case.

The smallest details can make a huge difference when treating injuries, so noting the look and even the smell of a wound could be a game changer for you or whomever is injured.


4 – Barrier Devices

With the rise of violence in the Middle East, FlightHub recommends potentially outfitting your first aid kit with pocket masks if you are traveling in particularly dangerous locales.

Beyond use in a war-like situation, masks also improve sterility when dealing with injury.


5 – A Small Radio

Backpackers have a lifestyle that calls for a streamlined approach to packing. Generally applying to larger emergency kits, radios are now small enough that they can fit in a first aid kit.

Why a radio? Situations like dangerous weather call for a radio so you can be aware of weather warnings and forecasts. Seems trivial, but knowledge is power, and radios can make you a king.


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